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Crashing Crush

“I like to think about what was going on the year the grapes were growing; how the sun was shining; if it rained. I like to think about all the people who tended and picked the grapes. And if it’s an old wine, how many of them must be dead by now. I love how wine…

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Tasting the Stars

“Come quickly, I am tasting the stars!” ~ Dom Perignon, at the moment he discovered champagne. One hot, dusty evening I round the corner away from the busy bustling restaurant strip, where fancy cars are being valeted in throngs. I walk further and further away from the hustle and bustle of fashionable people jockeying for the best…

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Comfort Me

“The brains are almost entirely texture–like savory marshmallows in a crisp crust. Tossed with salty capers and drizzled with a sweet buttery sherry sauce, they play tricks in your mouth. I make them whenever things are going badly. They’re a lot of work, but they’re worth it. They remind me that life is full of…

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Beauty Direct from a Volcano

I love flowers. No, really. I LOVE LOVE LOVE flowers! No easier way to brighten up anyone’s day than with a few stems of happy color. Whether a special occasion or just because, a thank you or a “Get well soon!”, flowers always seem to convey just the right message. It is impossible not to…

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Flame Kissed Sweets

Summer is here. So, we head outside to savor every single moment of sunny weather. In my neighborhood, the air is perfumed with the scent of BBQ smoke. We love alfresco dining and entertaining. When it comes to grilling, I have a reputation for being “better than a man”. While I am not sure if…

Deviled Egg with Powdered Bacon & Hot Sauce at The Bedford in Chicago. (Photo by Gourmet Rambler)

Devil’s Advocate

I love eggs. The egg just maybe the world’s most perfect food. It’s great for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snack. It is packed with nutrition. And more importantly, it is delicious. I love eggs scrambled, fried, poached, shirred, hard-boiled, over easy, sunny side up, baked into a quiche, beaten into a salad dressing, stirred into…

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40 is the New Beautiful

A couple years back I celebrated two milestone dates. Two of my favorite ravishing Chicago (at the time) beauties turned the “BIG 4-0″ corner. And when it comes to aging gracefully, these two sophisticated ladies are quite unparalleled. I should only be so lucky to greet my own “BIG 4-0″ with such grace and dignity and enthusiasm and…

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Read the Labels

Just because something is light or fat-free doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Need proof? Read the ingredient label. Can you recognize and pronounce most of the ingredients? Just sayin’.  

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Heat Things Up!

Farmers market season is here, hooray! With summer produce arriving on the scene, I always find myself with lots of veggies in the fridge. I use as much as I can fresh, but what to do with the rest? As of late I have become the queen of refrigerator pickles. I don’t want to mess…